After making my way through the CDs, I noticed that the store actually had a segregated section of CD singles! How long has it been since I’ve seen the likes of those? Rooting through the stock brought to mind the golden era of trips to Atlanta in the 90s when a visit to the almighty Tower Records there was de riguer. Back then, I spent $10.00 for a CD single back when there were usually two issued per title for any band I collected as imports. Today, the selection was surprisingly good, but the prices were much lower.
I did pick a US Mute Goldfrapp that looked like it piled all of the eight tracks from both import “Utopia [Genetically Enriched]” CD singles onto a single digipak. This marks the first time that I have bought any Goldfrapp material on single, but the “Felt Mountain” album of theirs was my favorite, so why not? Then, next to the boxes of CD singles was the comedy section! Pulse quickening, I examined the box to find that, yes, there was a Firesign Theatre CD that was not already in my Record Cell! “All Things Firesign,” their 2003 swansong, was now in my collection.
I had seen two small bins of new 7″ material but I next found the motherlode of older 7″ stock. This was now getting interesting! Especially since the first thing to strike my corneas is the debut ABC single. I had bought my copy of this at Fantasyland Records in Atlanta [in their old location] some 24 years earlier. What is it about this particular single and Atlanta? It’s not as though I ever see it anywhere else. There was a lot of good 7″ stock available here. I began filing through it, not wanting to miss anything.
I saw lots of fine records that I already had; a good sign! The “F” section was rife with John Foxx and Flying Lizards goodies that already sit in the Record Cell of course, but this old Monk is not so jaded that he doesn’t get a little misty-eyed when encountering these titles out in the wild! The Peter Gabriel section reminded me that there was a time when I was actively buying his records 32 years ago, and I cleaned up my 7″ needs at the dawn of the new millennium. Still, nice to see any picture sleeves from his third album; surely an all-time best for Hipgnosis? I didn’t see anything in the “G” section but it was like old-homecoming week once I made my way to the “H” section. What did I see there but a 45 by Orlando’s garage punk kings The Hate Bombs.
I saw some fine It’s Immmaterial 7″ material that a year earlier I would have been all over like white on rice, but with that supa-fine DLX RM of “Life’s Hard And Then You Die” in house, these actions are no longer necessary. Then, as I was moving forward, the thought occurred: I wondered if they had possibly the most desirable 7″ record on my want list?
Yessssssss! [Monk steeples fingers] The almighty US 7″ edit of “Autobahn” by Kraftwerk! This was the crude 7″ edit that 42 years ago changed my young life’s path. Nearly 2 decades ago, I bought a UK 7″ from a mail order catalog, not knowing that the US and UK record companies had each made their own 7″ edit from the 23 minute album side. It was sometime over a decade ago, when after listening to the noisy UK 7″ I hit upon the notion of editing a ripped CD file of the song to replicate my 1974 experience of the song digitally! I spent several tedious hours doing this only to discover years later, that I had replicated the UK 7″ edit! Not the one I had not heard since 1974, and I had barely heard it back then! So this record has been in my sights for years with another editing session awaiting me to finally recreate the magic digitally. [takes deep breath]
Then I found some more material that rarely troubled me in the bins. While I had little difficulty picking up a large and virtually complete Toyah collection in the confines of Central Florida in the early 80s, any sightings of her material in the last 30 years has been ridiculously thin on the ground. I was touched to see the sleeve whose photo made me think “anyone who looks like that I simply have to hear” when stumbling across her “Thunder In The Mountains” single.
I had brought along a spare sleeve for a clear vinyl 7″ of Ultravox’s “The Voice” along on this trip for a Midge Ure autograph. Still, I had to look at the “U” section; I always do. Wouldn’t you know it, they stocked not one, but two copies of “The Voice” on 7″ single; albeit black vinyl with blue injection labels. Had I been too far gone along the collecting route, I would have bought one on principle! Being more relaxed, I let it go.
Next: …12″ Vinyl Awaits